Torn knee ligaments likely to KO Sirmon

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee Titans linebacker Peter Sirmon
probably will miss the season with torn ligaments in his left knee.

Sirmon twisted the knee Monday in limited contact drills during
the Titans' first practice in full pads.

"It felt like something was definitely wrong when I first did
it," he said. "It felt like my knee kind of came apart."

Sirmon limped off the field and team trainers iced the knee, but
no one initially believed the injury was very serious. An MRI on
Tuesday revealed torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral

"We suspected Monday night that there was going to be an MCL
sprain, but he had a great deal of swelling this morning," coach
Jeff Fisher said. "In Dr. Burton Elrod's estimation, there is
still some fiber connecting the joint. But in all likelihood, Pete
will require reconstructive surgery."

His anterior cruciate ligament is not completely torn, but
Sirmon would risk a complete tear if he plays on it without

He will seek a second opinion Monday from noted surgeon Dr.
James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala. Even though his season is most
probably over, Sirmon said the injury could have been worse.

"I feel pretty fortunate, because the meniscus seems to be all
right," he said. "If you start having tears in that, then you get
bone-on-bone and you get problems with arthritis and things like

Sirmon, selected by Tennessee in the fourth round of the 2000
Draft, is a two-year starter at linebacker and had 86 tackles last
season. He signed a four-year, $12 million extension before the
2003 season.

"It's a difficult loss for our defense," Fisher said. "Pete
had a great offseason. He's coming off two great years and was
really looking forward to this. He was emerging as one of our

With Sirmon out, third-year player Rocky Boiman will step into
his starting position and middle linebacker Rocky Calmus will take
over Sirmon's duties in the nickel package.